One of the biggest obstacles facing women in their ability to succeed in network marketing is lack of confidence. Early in my career, I suffered from this terrible disease myself.

When I grew up, boys were encouraged to play hard, be strong, compete, and succeed, while girls were taught to share, be kind, be polite, and get along. Today YouTube features little girls objecting to pink and clamoring for superhero toys, but in my generation, girls were expected to play with dolls, toy kitchens, and tea sets. In school we were directed toward secretarial work and homemaking skills, or toward careers in teaching and nursing. Somewhere along the way girls became also burdened with the responsibility for what others thought, for making a good impression and pleasing boys.

Can you see how brutal network marketing can be on people who put a high value on others' opinions? On being liked and accepted? Rejection has destroyed more would-be network marketing successes than anything else.

Being aware of how we were conditioned does not make those beliefs disappear. The only way to erase them is to create new thought patterns and beliefs.

For me, this shift happened by accident. When I was young and new to network marketing, my sponsor invited me to work with him in Canada. Based in Toronto, he ran a job opportunity ad in The Globe and Mail and asked me to respond to the calls we received.

I had no idea how to interview people for network marketing, which was not a popular career path at the time. I had to project the persona of a confident, successful interviewer looking to select candidates qualified to receive my valuable time and expertise in creating a six-figure income—while I was making $15,000 a year as a teacher.

I believed success was in my future and that my only option was to act the part. I chose the president of Chase Manhattan Bank as my visual. Imagining how this person would act, dress, walk, talk, and shake hands with others, I virtually became that person.

By becoming on the outside who I needed to be in the moment, I ultimately became that person on the inside, too. I didn't fully understand what I was doing, but I was resetting my future level of confidence. I was creating new thought patterns and beliefs by acting as if I had confidence.

Winners and high achievers constantly battle with lack of confidence, but pushing through their fears and doubts is what separates them from wannabes. Living as if they already attained success is their secret formula.

To make your dreams a present fact, assume the feeling of the dream fulfilled, then get to work on the necessary activities. This is exactly how I became a confident business woman.

PAULA PRITCHARD is a successful network marketing
leader who has built huge organizations throughout the
United States and Europe. She is a sought-after generic
trainer and has been a Networking University faculty
member since 2003.